There are some people out there who are harder to like than others. Ya know those folks who just…kinda irritate you? They may be wonderful people but, well, for some reason or another, you’re not exactly their biggest fan. Ya know?
I was recently working through a relationship like this…I like to call this relationship a “gift” from God. Jesus put us in each other’s lives to help us grow. Granted, sometimes I feel like I’d rather return my “relationship gift”, but, I’m pretty certain God knew what He was doing when He placed this person in my life. It’s gonna be a great testimony. Or something.
Anyway, I was dealing with a relationship gift, and feeling really down. I’m one of those people who will pick things apart and over-think things until there’s nothing left to think about (and then think about it even more). SO, when someone tends to annoy me, it’s easy for me to fixate on all of their flaws. Welp, I found some flaws. And was becoming more and more miserable by the second. Yeah. By magnifying their shortcomings, I was the one who ended up becoming more upset.
It was during this emotional funk, that Jesus grabbed my attention. With a tiny whisper–more like a little nudge– He told me to stop griping and pray for this person. I mean, anyone can find flaws. It’s really not that hard to pinpoint someone’s weaknesses…especially if that someone tends to be more of a challenge for you. But to pray for and bless that person? That takes Jesus. It’s hard and feels weird and isn’t always fun…and yet, that’s where Jesus is.
That person who you’re struggling with? Jesus loves them SO MUCH. He has good plans for them, and is so excited about who He’s made them to be. He sees who He has created that person to be–AND HE LIKES THEM. He’s just as crazy about them as He is you.
You ever hear that old song, “I Say A Little Prayer for You”? (Yeah, super old song. Whatever. It’s Aretha Franklin and I like it. So. Don’t judge). Now, granted this song is about a lady who likes a guy and prays for him every time she gets a chance. “The moment I wake up, before I put on my make up…At work I just take time, and all through my coffee break time…I say a little prayer for you”
But still. What if I did that for my gift? What if I made it a priority to regularly pray–with the Lord’s heart–for the challenging people in my life? Like, to intentionally bless them, even if they’ll never hear it?
Because, let’s face it: My gift may be difficult, but they aren’t the root issue. It’s my heart God wants me to be looking at. He wants to transform my heart, and give me His instead. The only one I can change is me…and maybe that’s what Jesus wants to do. Change some things in my heart.
(Matt. 5:44, Matt 5:48, Romans 12:19-21, Luke 6:27)
PS :In case you have no idea what song I’m talking about…